Phil Lynott and Graham Parker - Phoenix Arizona 1977
In 1977 the NME sent me off to LA cover the US Tour featuring Thin Lizzy and Graham Parker and the Rumour. Both bands were at the peak of their powers and the two bands produced some of the best live shows I have ever seen. But although I managed to get time with GP and the Rumour at the famed Hyatt House Hotel, Thin Lizzy proved more elusive and their manager suggested that I come with them on the road for a few more dates in Texas and Arizona and do the photos there when there were less distractions, whilst my job was to take photos of Lizzy, which I did out in the desert near Phoenix, I also wanted to get some photos of the two frontmen together, just for myself. The three of us went driving around Phoenix looking for locations. Being Brits we loved the Stop Don't Stop road signs and decided that this was just right for the photos, I was shooting close ups of the two guys when I saw that around the corner were a couple of Mexicans sitting quietly in the blistering heat. I told Philip and Graham to stay where they were and quickly ran across the street to take a photo that included the Mexicans. Back then it was unusual to do photos like this, where the Rock Stars are small in the frame, but it made for a very special photo, one of my very finest I think.
Debbie Harry - London 1977
I had met Debbie Harry and Chris Stein a number of times and when the NME decided to put her on the cover in 1977 I suggested that we shoot the photos in the Studio instead of the normal reportage style that the paper usually did. I had previously shot a studio cover of the Clash earlier that year on a white background so I figured that Debbie should be on black. The session was booked for ten o'clock in the morning but we all went out together the previous evening, staying up well into the middle of the night. Debbie Harry virtually defines the word photogenic and I knew that no matter how little experience I had in the studio we would produce great photos together. Unfortunately, when she arrived she was still very tired from the previous evening and her eyes were hardly open. I immediately handed her a pair of Ray Bans and suggested the sunglasses would make the photo look cooler. As a person who is very easy to photograph the session lasted only about fifteen minutes, wearing a Rudolph Valentino T-Shirt and a short denim skirt Debbie sat on the stool and we went thru a variety of poses. Once we did the photo seen here we knew we had what we wanted, I shot a few frames like this and a few of the same pose in full length, the job was done and this photo appeared on the cover of the NME the following week.